The past three years have seen a prolific and uncannily conscious pop output from Zach Phillips and Christina Schneider—longtime overseers of beloved and recently-shuttered OSR Tapes—as CE Schneider Topical. Recently, they've brought in Derek Baron of Causings and Mega Bog on drums and Quentin Moore of Big French on guitar for a new fuller-band incarnation, Jepeto Solutions. While the arrangements on Jepeto’s self-titled “semi-debut” 7" are as supple and the lyrics as alarmingly clever as in the duo’s last full-length, Antifree, these new songs push an even bigger, clearer sound (with some help from Tom Csatari's slide, wah, and whammy). After Schneider’s opening call to action for women—“You can write the books!”—Jepeto shuttles us into a wobbling, wah-infused side-eye at the “anti-truth exercise” being imposed on us all. Then it’s into the manic pound of “Buzzard On The Cover,” where lunatic voices weave between the squeal and crush of guitars and electronics to deliver reminders like, “You wouldn’t tell your mother how to eat flesh." Even with the tempo wound down for a sweetly sung "Silver Bells" (which first appeared on Schneider’s solo debut), we're gifted all too real and sobering intimations of a Christmas hellscape. This record in particular seems to be a response to the storm of bad news we’ve seen in the past few months, and it's fighting fire with fire effectively.
You can stream Jepeto Solutions in full below. The 7" is out today on Nicey Music, a new LA-based not-for-profit label "believing in the power of music to create actual joy and positive change."